Japanese electronics company Suidobashi Heavy Industry unveils its Kuratas robot at the Wonder Festival in Chiba, suburban Tokyo on July 29, 2012.
Suidobashi, you have a giant robot, we have a giant robot. You know what needs to happen.”
With these fighting words, a new, robo-martial space race era was born. U.S.-based robotics company MegaBots issued the challenge late last month, as it put the finishing touches to its Mark 2 model, “America’s first fully-functional, giant piloted robot.”
At six tons and controlled by two pilots, the Mark 2 fires 3-pound paint cannonballs at speeds of over 100 miles per hour (160 kilometers an hour). The company plans to create a futuristic sports league where the giant robots batter each other into submission.
The video, featuring co-founders Matt Oehrlein and Gui Cavalcanti, challenges the only other company in the world that can give its mechanic behemoth a run for its money. Suidobashi Heavy Industry has created the Kuratas, a towering, single-pilot robot, which is already commercially available.
Japan picks up gauntlet
On Sunday, ahead of Japan’s Women’s World Cup final clash with the U.S., Suidobashi CEO Kogoro Kurata responded, saying, “I’ll fight. Absolutely.”
The MegaBots challenge gives both teams a year to make the modifications necessary to engage in robot-on-robot combat.
“It’s interesting, I’ll give them that,” Kurata said in a video response posted on YouTube and the company’s Facebook page on July 5. “But come on guys, make it interesting! Just building something huge and sticking guns on it… it’s… super-American.”